Oh RuBY!


RBY-FINALIST-2016Wow, what a year it’s been. 2016 has been a year of celebration for me. I’ve been blessed with two beautiful new babies – a niece and a nephew – and my book baby, Home to Bindarra Creek has done very nicely since its release in December 2015.

Last month I received the news that Home to Bindarra Creek had made it to the finals in Romance Writers of Australia’s Romantic Book of the Year Award (RUBY). I’m thrilled to be there with several wonderful authors who I admire greatly. Years ago, when I began this journey, I had dreams and aspirations but I never imagined being nominated, not once but twice, for this prestigious award.

I didn’t make this journey alone though. With every story I write, I have the support of my amazing critique partners and beta readers whose feedback is invaluable, and my family who make sure I’m fed and watered while I immerse myself in my own little world.

Home to Bindarra Creek might never have been written were it not for the fabulous SE Gilchrist whose brainchild the series was, and the ladies from the Hunter Romance Writers who so kindly invited this West Aussie to join them in this venture. What a pleasure it’s been to work with such a talented and organized group of authors. We created a town we all wanted to live in. Thank you.

To my wonderful critique partners: Kerrie Paterson, SE Gilchrist, Jennie Jones, Lily Malone, Claire Boston, Nora James, Susanna Rogers, Anna Jacobs and Teena Raffa-Mulligan – your input is magic. You’ve helped me craft a book with heart. My beta reader, Anne O’Dell, who gives me such wonderfully honest feedback – you’re a treasure. Not to be forgotten, my editor Belinda Holmes – you make me smile with your wonderfully uplifting comments and suggestions. And of course, readers, judges and RWA for making all this possible.

Home to Bindarra Creek 2016 Releases


Love and Life in a Small Country Town

Welcome to Bindarra Creek, a struggling country community whose townspeople work hard and love deeply.  Set in the tablelands of New England, Australia, the fictional Bindarra Creek is a drought stricken community full of intrigue, adventure, drama and honest country goodness. Life and love in a small country town has never been more challenging.

Happy Days!


There’s something sweet about holding a paperback in your hands, even more so when it’s your own hard work. As much as I love my Kindle, there is no competition for the feel and smell of the real deal. Today, so many happy memories were made (except for the air conditioning saga – that’s a story for another day).

First, I woke up to fabulous news from fellow Bindarra Bestseller_cropCreek Romance author, Kerrie Paterson that Home to Bindarra Creek had hit the number 1 spot in Westerns! At one stage we were side by side, but welcomed in new contender at number 2.

10_11_12Then came more great news. Our Dirty Drafters critique group comprised of myself, Jennie Jones and Lily Malone, lined up in a row and paid tribute to good old-fashioned teamwork! We played tag, swapping positions a few times during the day. I couldn’t possibly think of a better sandwich to be in (unless it’s all 13 Bindarra Creek Romances in a row!)

12295484_10208150442224278_4578512998218395724_nLast but not least, my proof copies arrived early and I could feel and smell my book in print. Mums will recognise the expression of pure bliss on their baby’s face when they clutch their favourite blanket or suck that flavoured dummy. Yep, that was me today, sniffing away with a look of bliss on my face at the exotic perfume of fresh ink and newly trimmed paper.

Could life get any better? (Well, with the exception of a working air conditioner in the expected 38 degree celsius heat?) Oh hell no! Fly, Dan and Alice, fly.

Oh and yeah, I almost forgot! If you like, you can read my latest newsletter here.

 

 

 

Meet Juanita Kees


I’m talking a day in the office and A Bindarra Creek Romance on Wordmothers today. Can you tell I’m excited about the upcoming release of Home to Bindarra Creek?

WordMothers

Interview by Nicole Melanson ~

Interview with writer Juanita Kees by Nicole Melanson - photo by Katrina Wall

Juanita Kees graduated from the Australian College QED, Bondi, with a diploma in Proofreading, Editing and Publishing, and achieved her dream of becoming a published author in 2012 with the release of her debut romantic suspense, Fly Away Peta, from Eternal Press.

Under the Hood (Book 1 in the Tag Raiders series) followed in 2013 as one of the first releases from Harlequin’s digital pioneer, Escape Publishing.

In 2014 Juanita was nominated for the Lynne Wilding Award (Romance Writers of Australia), and was a finalist in the Romance Writers of Australia Romantic Book of the Year and the Australian Romance Readers Awards.

She escapes the real world to write stories starring spirited heroines who give the hero a run for his money before giving in.

Juanita’s website

Juanita on Facebook

Twitter: @juanitakees

Writer Juanita Kees Book Cover - Under the Hood Under the Hood by Juanita Kees

HOW DID YOU GET STARTED?

I…

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Hump Day Hunk with Juanita Kees


Alice Pritchard, heroine from Home to Bindarra Creek talks about her hero, Hump Day Hunk Dan Molyneaux. Would love for you to pop over and say hi.

AusRomToday

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Hump Day Hunk with Juanita Kees

Hi, Alice here. I’ve lived in Bindarra Creek forever. It used to be a small, quiet town…until the arrival of Dan Molyneaux.

My life turned upside down the day he crashed near that damn tree, throwing me right out of my comfort zone and breaking down the walls I’d built around me. He roared into town in his high-powered V8—all citified—an investment broker who thought he could reopen the Riverside Pub and rip the band aid off my past.

When I saw him on the side of the road—all tall, dark-haired, a feel-worthy arse and eyes the colour of rich hazelnut chocolate (imagine a combination of Hugh Jackman and Eric Bana)—I wanted to shoot him for being so damn nice and reawakening my heart.

Hugh

I was hoping some of our crazy locals would scare him off, like Old Man Jake and my grandad Charlie…

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28 Days and Counting


I checked the countdown on my website today and realized there are only 28 days to go to the release of my self-published small town romance, Home to Bindarra Creek, book 6 in A Bindarra Creek Romance.

It’s panic stations here at Dirty Draft headquarters where I’m obsessively checking formatting, spelling, grammar and punctuation across all platforms. I’m driving myself crazy wondering if I’ve missed something despite the army of critique partners, beta readers and editors I’ve had on it. Have I caught all the commas? Have I eradicated gaps in the wrong places or quotation marks that might be out of place? All this and I still have to put it through the Smashwords meatgrinder, quite possibly the most unforgiving publishing software known to man (and woman). But come release day, I know I’ll have done everything in my power to bring you a story I hope you’ll love.

Like my predecessors in this series, I have worked hard to create a town so real you’d like to live there, characters you’d love to have as neighbours and a story that will keep you reading from start to finish. Here’s a little taste of what to expect:

Alice grinned. She adored Edwina, Bindarra Creek’s self-proclaimed psychic and tarot reader. Former town constable Dodge’s wise grandmother saw too much, even without the help of her cards.

“So what do we have here then?” Edwina waved across to where Dan looked as if he was describing something to the two boys whose attention he commanded.

“Discipline 101 Molyneaux-style,” explained Maureen.

“Good looking boy you have there, Maureen. Makes me wish I was a few years younger. Came to have a sticky beak. He has a good aura, a healthy green.” Her glance slid to Alice. “A good match for a tan one.”

Alice rolled her eyes. “I hope you find him a good match then.”

“Good matches, my dear Alice, find each other as long as the shadows let them. Let the rainbows in, girl.”

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Cover Love


Home to Bindarra Creek

I have a serious case of cover love thanks to Ida at Amygdala Book Cover Designs. Isn’t it beautiful? But let me tell you a little more about the town of Bindarra Creek.

In 2015, thirteen authors joined together to write thirteen stories centred around the joys, hardships, despairs and triumphs of living in a small, rural town. These stories will be released one a month beginning July 2015. So keep an eye out for S E Gilchrist’s Bindarra Creek Makeover coming soon.

Laugh, cry and fall in love with a struggling country community whose townspeople work hard and love deeply. Set in the tablelands of New England, Australia, the fictional Bindarra Creek is a drought stricken community full of intrigue, adventure, drama and honest country goodness. Life and love in a small country town has never been more challenging.

Join us every month from now until mid-2016 where each of the authors will introduce you to a new romance in the rural town of Bindarra Creek.

PS: Home to Bindarra Creek is due for release in December 2015 😀